Cape Cod is known worldwide for its miles of white sandy beaches. But, did you know that Cape Cod is also rich in history, arts and culture, scientific exploration and research, and athletic excellence?
From the earliest European explorers to the pioneers of telecommunications, the Cape has a history to boast about. Giovanni da Verrazano explored the Cape's southern waters in 1524, Bartholomew Gosnold gave the Cape its name in 1602, Samuel de Champlain mapped the shoreline in 1606 and Henry Hudson landed here in 1609. Contrary to popular myth, the Pilgrims made their first landing near what is today Provincetown on November 11, 1620 and in present-day Eastham, they had their first encounter with Native Americans. During the Nineteenth century, Cape Cod was a center of shipping and commerce. And early in the twentieth century, Guglielmo Marconi made the first transatlantic wireless radio transmission originating in the United States from Wellfleet.
Image above: Marconi Wireless Station, Wellfleet, MA
The Cape has long been known as a retreat for artists and writers. Cape Cod stages have been graced with great talents such as Humphrey Bogart, Marlon Brando, Bette Davis, Richard Gere, Helen Hayes, Julie Harris, Billie Holiday, Eartha Kitt, Gertrude Lawrence, Al Pacino, Gregory Peck, Basil Rathbone, Ginger Rogers, Bobby Short and Lana Turner. Writers, including Eugene O'Neill, Tennessee Williams, Truman Capote, Stanley Kunitz, Norman Mailer and Robert Pinsky have found inspiration here. Artists such as Edward Hopper, Robert Motherwell, Jackson Pollock, Hans Hofmann and Willem de Kooning have lived and worked here.
Image above: The Edward Hopper house in Truro, MA
The prestigious Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute makes its home on the Cape. From the study of marine life to exploration of the deep ocean, there is no finer institution of maritime research.
Cape Cod is also home to the premier summer league for collegiate baseball players, the Cape Cod Baseball League. Founded in 1885, the CCBL has been called "the last best league" for its use of wooden bats, the family atmosphere, the free admission and the caliber of the play, rivaling that of Single-A professional ball. Major League Baseball scouts are fixtures at the games, and have scouted talents like Jeff Bagwell, Mark Bellhorn, Lance Berkman, Craig Biggio, Jeromy Burnitz, Jeff Conine, Darin Erstad, John Franco, Nomar Garciaparra, Todd Helton, Eric Hinske, Jeff Kent, Mark Loretta, Mike Lowell, Tino Martinez, Kevin Millar, Doug Mirabelli, Matt Morris, Bill Mueller, Mark Mulder, Mike Myers, Russ Ortiz, Brian Roberts, Tim Salmon, Ben Sheets, Mark Teixeira, Frank Thomas, Chase Utley, Jason Varitek, Mo Vaughn, Robin Ventura, Billy Wagner, Todd Walker, Kevin Youkilis and Barry Zito.
There's more to the Cape than the beautiful beaches!